Just by paying attention to the news, it is apparent the Kasich administration and the Ohio General Assembly do not care about what happens to schools in Ohio and, specifically, in Clyde and Green Springs.
The administration and the legislature continue to heap new demands and new programs on local schools while taking away funding and finding new means to move money from local schools to private businesses that operate charter schools.
We have heard from our politicians for many years how they were going to eliminate the unfunded mandates for schools. But the new programs and new requirements and all of the additional training that goes with them just keep coming. These new, unfunded mandates are coming at a time when a large percentage of Ohio school districts have made drastic cuts to personnel and programs in order to balance the budget. They are coming at a time when the state has reduced funding to local schools in order to balance its own budget and when they have eliminated tangible personal property taxes, a tax that was paid by business and industry directly to schools.
The new evaluation systems for principals and teachers will cost money for training and implementation, money that local schools do not have.
By 2014, all students will be taking their state-required tests online. Where does the money come from to purchase the necessary technology to access these tests? Once again, the local school district bears the brunt of these additional costs during a time when we do not have enough state funding to maintain what we already have.
The new common core standards may mean some of our textbooks do not cover all of the necessary material. Who pays to replace these textbooks?
You can be assured there will be no money coming from Columbus to solve this problem.
The Clyde-Green Springs school community has blessed the district and its children for generations to come with new and remodeled buildings. During that same time, the district has cut more than $2 million from the operating budget. A number of valuable programs and services have been lost to these budget cuts.
Through it all, the state continues to take away funds and to add to the list of unfunded mandates.
It has become very clear the only people who care about the future of the Clyde-Green Springs Schools are the people right here in our school community. This community has for a very long time taken great pride in the district and the children in our schools. It is this same community, working together, that can prevent further loss of the programs, services and personnel that have made this district Excellent with Distinction.
Gregg Elchert, superintendent,
Clyde-Green Springs Schools